District 200 has new community services director
As a self-described high school “theater geek,” Carol Smith learned that, by working together, young people can accomplish amazing things.
As Woodstock School District 200’s new director of community services, Smith looks forward to sharing similar stories about students in Woodstock.
Smith began her new position July 2, taking over for long-time community services director Barb Banker, who retired in June. Prior to joining D-200, Smith was the director of marketing and business development for the ECRA Group in Rosemont, an education research firm.
“We helped districts evaluate programs and [helped them] with research. School districts were our main clients,” she said.
A Brookfield native, Smith’s parents were both educators. Her father was a school principal, and her mother was a librarian. From about fourth grade on, Smith loved performing on stage and with the school choirs.
“I was a total theater geek,” she said, laughing, adding that one of her favorite roles was that of Kanga in a production of “Winnie the Pooh.”
But those productions brought friendships and life lessons which remained with her for years to come, especially a production of “Jesus Christ Superstar,” the summer following her sophomore year.
“The fact that everyone involved, the entire cast and crew, were under 21, and to be able to put on a production of that magnitude … Even now, I look back on it, and I’m amazed,” she said.
Though she loved performing, when it came time for college, Smith initially planned to become an English teacher, but a tough job market and advice from her father steered her in a different direction. She graduated from Illinois State University with a degree in speech communications.
After graduation, she moved to Springfield and began her marketing and public relations career in the banking industry. In 1999, she took a community services position with the Springfield Public Schools, a K-12 district of about 15,000 students. In 2007, she and her family relocated to Deerfield, and she joined Township High School District 113, covering Highland Park High School and Deerfield High School.
She said D-200 offers the size and variety she enjoys most.
“Woodstock is a nice size, and I also like that it’s a kindergarten through high school district. I can read to first graders one day and look at a high school art show the next,” she said.
One of her first projects with D-200 will be to implement a social media policy and establish a district Facebook presence.
“It’s just one more way we can keep in touch with our families and the community to show them what’s happening in our schools,” she said.
Smith and her husband are parents of two girls, ages 14 and 10. The family resides in Deerfield.